Response plz?: When "evening and morning" are used with a day in Genesis it implies 24 hours

(Adam Kania) #1

Can I get a response to this argument: When “evening and morning” are used with a day in Genesis it implies 24 hours.

(Christy Hemphill) #2

It implies a day. The normal kind.

But let me ask you this. If I write a poem and I talk about the spring of my life (my youth), the summer of my life (the prime), the autumn of my life (middle age), and the winter of my life (old age), does that mean I am only 12 months old?

(Christy Hemphill) #3

See also this common question page for a more in depth treatment of this question:

(John Warren) #4

Do you write poems with a lot of “and God said”, “and God made”, “and God set”? It looks like the language of narrative, not of poetry.

(Christy Hemphill) #5

I don’t. David sure did. So did the author of Job. Poems can tell narratives, and in fact they often do. Poems can narrate history. Poetic and narrative and history are not mutually exclusive categories.

I’m not even saying Genesis one is a poem. It does use literary devices, one of which is a work week structure to frame its message. Pointing out that it narrates events does not negate the fact that it does so in a literary way.

(Phil) #6

Let me answer with a question of my own: If You read a passage that speaks of evening and morning for three cycles before the sun comes into being,do you get the idea that it is not speaking of the normal passage of days?


It does imply 24 hour days, but the entirety of Genesis 1-11 (the primeval history) is an allegory.

(Marshall Janzen) #8

No more (or less) than when “bowl” and “pours out” are used with God’s wrath in Revelation 16 it implies a liquid.

Within the context of the accounts, they do portray God’s wrath as a liquid and the days of creation as normal days, but that does not mean in reality God’s wrath is liquid and creation took place over a normal work week.

(John Warren) #9

No, I get the idea that something else was giving light for 3 days. I believe as the universe has stretched out over the thousands of years since then that light has reddenned into the cosmic microwave background.

(George Brooks) #10


Doesn’t this just further the point that the writer’s belief in “something else giving light for 3 days” was based on ancient ideas - - and didn’t have anything to do with true cosmology?

You are proposing that there was a vast source of light … but it wasn’t the Sun?

Just so you know, the ancients thought the Sky produced light… and that the Sun merely synchronized its movement with the sky’s light-producing schedule.

Again, an ancient idea that showed the limitations of the ancient view of Cosmology… just like the thought that “stars” could fall and land on the Earth.

(Phil) #11

So, you are saying these were not normal days? Morning normally is defined defined as starting at sunrise, evening as starting at sunset, especially in a culture that did not have clocks.

(Phil) #12

Ah, but George, it could not be a “vast source” of light, since to have a dawn it would have to be a unidirectional and smallish point of light to be observed from any one point on earth as a dawn. And what particular vantage point from earth would you choose (unless you assume a flat earth for which dawn came at the same time to the whole earth as did sunset, which truthfully, is the implication of the text.) And to propose the light was shining from God, brings up issues like explaining the omnipresence of God. Of course, the whole issue of putting God on a time clock is pretty problematic itself, especially as clocks were not invented yet. Or people.

(John Warren) #13

The CMB is pretty vast. Resemblance to ANE legends doesn’t make the Bible legendary. It makes the ANE legends corruption of what really happened.

(John Warren) #14

They were days, because that was the word that was used. And everyone knew how long a day was. They weren’t normal in that the Sun wasn’t created yet. But there was a light source that could delimite day and night.

(George Brooks) #15


So do you think a star ever fell to Earth? … even once? You could say that it was a meteorite … but then it should have had a different name, not the same name as a star, right?

When Job describes God as storing his snow and hail in warehouses (treasuries)… do you think they used to be in orbit around Earth?

Do you think there used to be a celestial ocean in the sky?

When the spirit of Samuel appeared up from the ground, is that because God really houses deceased human spirits underground?

(John Warren) #16

It could be vast and still have structure. But actually there’s nothing in the text that says it has to be vast. Just a light source. Does it matter we don’t know what it is today?

(John Warren) #17

No, and I don’t think bread and wine literally become Jesus’s body and blood.

(John Warren) #18

I do think there used to be a water canopy over the earth, because the text says there was one.

(John Warren) #19

The text says the Spirit appeared from the ground, so, yes, it came from the ground. Why would it be otherwise?

(George Brooks) #20


And yet… Jesus, in the Gospel of John, insisted that it did … and many of his Jewish followers left him. Do you think they would have left him over a figure of speech?